10 Common Grammar Mistakes In Speaking English

Lesson summary

In this English lesson you will learn about 10 common English grammar mistakes that you may be making.

Video transcript

If you think any of these sentences are correct, then you need to watch this video. In today’s English lesson we are talking about 10 common English grammar mistakes that you might be making. Even if you’re an advanced learner of English, you may still be making some of these mistakes because some of these mistakes are wrong just because of one word. For each mistake we will look at why it’s wrong and how to fix it so you can start understanding English more like a native speaker. So if you’re ready to improve your English grammar, let’s get started!

 

Common mistake #1

Number one. Manchester United are winning. If you don’t know, Manchester United is a very famous soccer team from England. So why is this sentence incorrect? Manchester United is how many things? Is it one or more than one thing? It’s one thing. It’s just one team. But we have used ‘are’ with just one thing. We normally use ‘are’ with more than one thing, right? With plural nouns. For example, ‘The dogs are hungry.’ The people are walking.

 

To correct this sentence, we need to say ‘Manchester United is winning.’ We use ‘is’ because Manchester United is just one team. I understand that there are many players in the team but we are not talking about the players. We are talking about the team. If we were talking about the players, then we could use the word ‘are’. For example, ‘The Manchester United players are winning.’ This is correct. This is a very common mistake that even native speakers sometimes make when they are talking about teams, governments or other things that are made up of many people, they like to use the word ‘are’. But this is incorrect. So the next time you are talking about a team or a government or something that is made up of many people use ‘is’, not ‘are’.

 

Common mistake #2

Number two. Can I invite another people? This is incorrect because we normally use the word ‘another’ with a singular noun, not a plural noun. This is because when we use the word ‘another’, that means we normally have one thing already and we want to add one more thing.

 

For example, if I say ‘Can I have another phone’, that means I already have a phone and I want to add one more. I want one more. Whenever I think about the word ‘another’, I always think about adding one more. I have one already and I add one more thing. So to correct this sentence, you need to say ‘Can I invite another person?’ If you want to talk about more than one person, then you can say ‘Can I invite some more people’ or ‘Can I invite other people?’

 

Common mistake #3

Number three. I like to running. This sentence is incorrect because after ‘to’ we normally don’t use verb ING. After ‘to’ we normally use verb 1. Some common examples of verb 1 are ‘run’, ‘eat’ and ‘sleep’. These are all the present tense forms of a verb. So to correct this sentence, we need to say ‘I like to run.’ You could also say ‘I like running.’ After the word ‘like’, you can use verb ING. For example, ‘I like eating noodles.’ I like swimming. I like going to the park.

 

Common mistake #4

Number four. If you will go to the party, I will go too. Can you see what is wrong with this sentence? This sentence is a first conditional sentence because we are talking about one possible situation in the future. The situation is going to the party in the future. When we use the first conditional, the formula is ‘if’ plus present simple plus future simple.

 

But what we have used in this sentence is ‘if’ plus future simple plus future simple. We have used ‘will’ twice. We have said ‘you will’ and we have said ‘I will’. To correct this sentence, it’s very simple. We just have to remove the first ‘will’. We need to say ‘If you go to the party, I will go too.’ Remember. When you are talking about one possible situation in the future, you only need to use one ‘will’. ‘If’ plus present simple plus future simple.

 

Common mistake #5

Number five. I would rather young. What is wrong with this sentence? When we use the structure ‘I would rather’ and then we have an adjective, we need to use the verb ‘to be’. So to correct this sentence, we need to say ‘I would rather be young.’ I would rather be happy. I would rather be rich.

 

Common mistake #6

Number six. We are used to eat rice for breakfast in our country. This sentence could be wrong for two reasons depending on what you are trying to say. We can’t say ‘we are used to’ plus verb 1. Why? Because ‘we are used to’ means that you know about a certain thing or activity or you have done a certain thing or activity in the past. Because you are talking about a certain activity or a certain thing, that means you can’t use a verb 1. You need to say what that thing is.

 

So to correct this sentence, we could say ‘We are used to eating rice for breakfast in our country.’ Eating is a thing. Eating is a gerund. A gerund is a verb which acts as a noun. Now if you want to say that eating rice is something that you don’t do anymore, you don’t need to say ‘we are used to’. You need to say ‘We used to eat rice for breakfast in our country.’ Some other examples could be ‘I used to play soccer when I was a child’ or ‘They used to enjoy going to school.’ When you are talking about a past habit that doesn’t happen anymore, you don’t need to say ‘are’. Just say the subject and then ‘used to’.

 

Common mistake #7

Number seven. I am study at university. This sentence is incorrect because after ‘am’ we don’t use verb 1. If you want to use a verb after ‘am’, you need to use a verb ING. So to correct this sentence, we could say ‘I am studying at university’ or we could say ‘I study at university.’ A lot of students also like to say ‘I am studying at the university’ but this is incorrect because we normally use ‘the’ when we’re talking about something specific and that means that the speaker and the listener both know which university. But if you say to me ‘I am studying at the university’, I don’t know which university you are studying at.

 

Common mistake #8

Number eight. Please give me your advices. What is wrong with this sentence and why? The word ‘advice’ is an uncountable noun. That means when we use this word in English, we cannot add an S onto the end of that word. We cannot say ‘two advices’, ‘three advices’ or just ‘advices’. This is incorrect.

 

So to correct this sentence, we simply need to remove the S at the end of the word ‘advice’ and say ‘Please give me your advice.’ Another uncountable noun like this is ‘furniture’. Many students like to say things like ‘I have a lot of furnitures.’ But this is incorrect because the word ‘furniture’ cannot be counted in English and we cannot add an S onto the end of that word. So to correct this, we would need to say ‘I have a lot of furniture.’ The word ‘information’ is also another uncountable noun.

 

Common mistake #9

Number nine. I ever been there. This is incorrect because we cannot say ‘I ever been there’, ‘He ever been there’, ‘She ever been there.’ These sentences are incorrect. If you want to say you have been to a place, you can say ‘I have been there before.’ If you want to say you have not been to a place, you can say ‘I have never been there before.’ Don’t say ‘I ever’. It’s wrong.

 

Common mistake #10

Number ten. Would you like some drink? This sentence is incorrect because ‘drink’ is a countable noun. When we use the word ‘some’ with a countable noun, we normally need to add the letter S at the end of the countable noun. So to correct this sentence, we would need to say ‘Would you like some drinks?’ Would you like some apples? Would you like some chips?

 

But if you want to ask about just one thing, then you simply need to say ‘Would you like a’ or ‘Would you like an’ and then add the noun. For example, ‘Would you like a drink?’ Would you like an apple? Would you like a chip? Now if you’re using the phrase ‘Would you like some’ with an uncountable noun, then you don’t have to add S. For example, “Would you like some sugar?’ Would you like some coffee? Would you like some water? All of these sentences are correct.

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